What really grinds my gears

You know what really grinds my gears? When job ads don’t specify pay scales. It makes me suspicious, and it makes me angry. If I’m putting in the effort to read and parrot back their buzzwords, then I want to know what I’ll potentially get out of it.


I know in libraries, the answer is probably not much. But I don’t think any of us are under the illusion that it will be otherwise.

Having a quick, unscientific look at the jobs advertised on Seek today, this is what I have found:

Of the five Library Assistant roles advertised, only one of them advertised their pay range on both Seek and their website. Actually, I should say at all, because none of the others advertised theirs. Three of them had actually already expired, and therefore only (unhelpfully) existed on Seek.

Positions of a Team Leader/Manager level (of which there were three) also didn’t advertise pay scales on either Seek or their websites. Though one did come with the promise that the “salary will be negotiated with successful applicant”. Shouldn’t all salaries be negotiable?

And for positions labelled Subject/Reference Librarian, a whopping zero of the four declared theirs on Seek, but two did cough up on the organisation’s website (they were both for the same place though, so…).

A couple made a token gesture by stating the pay band, but what good is that without any context? On a couple of the websites I couldn’t even find their vacancy pages, and one of those websites was very pretty indeed.

Only one out of the dozen included an actual, real life hyperlink to the vacancy page – it’s a shame I couldn’t open it because it was a .docx file.

I think this can be said of most jobs advertised in New Zealand, regardless of industry. I can’t understand why it should be the case. It seems disingenuous and sneaky, and the first black mark against the companies who should be wooing us.

I imagine that a lot of them cannot compete financially with other organisations, and for this reason I do understand why they may want to leave it until the interview stage, where hopefully they’ve got at least one person with a sympathetic heart and a lifestyle that requires little financial funding.

Admittedly, I’ve fallen into the trap of unknowingly accepting a dud offer, because I couldn’t compare it to what other people offered. It doesn’t feel good once you realise you’ve been caught in a honey trap. I hope next time I will be stronger.


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